Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)

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The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) is a membership-based regional human rights organisation committed to the promotion and protection of all human rights, including the right to development, through collaboration and cooperation among human rights organizations and defenders in Asia.

Areas of Work

FORUM-ASIA runs a program aiming to strengthen the protection of human rights defenders, specifically those defending women’s rights as well as sexual orientation and gender identity. Other areas of work include: democratization, freedom of expression, freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of association, national human rights institutions and other accountability bodies, and ESCR.

Urgent Responses Offered 

Urgent appeals, international solidarity and communication strategies

Forum Asia produces statements related to violations against defenders and WHRDs. The website does not include a procedure for individuals or organizations to take action.

Advocacy with regional and international mechanisms

FORUM-ASIA regularly submits urgent appeals to the relevant UN Special Rapporteurs depending on the nature of the violation. It also engages with relevant government insitutions, diplomatic missions as well as national human rights institutions in Asia.

Legal assistance and trial observation

  • These types of assistance are provided to defenders charged with a legal case by a State or non-State actors as a form of threat or harassment for the work they do as defenders.
  • FORUM-ASIA provides financial assistance to cover administrative and legal fees for lawyers as well as the costs for trial observers/trial monitoring teams to be present during the court hearings. It taps its partners with expertise in monitoring court cases to observe the procedures of the defender’s trial.
  • For case verification purposes, the case of the defender/s requesting for assistance must be endorsed by a FORUM-ASIA member or partner.

 Temporary relocation and emergency hotline

  • Forum Asia has set up a relocation program for defenders and WHRDs in Asia. This program provides support for travel and living expenses for three to six months relocation.
  • Places for relocation for the HRD whose application has been approved will be explored by FORUM-ASIA, taking into consideration where it has member organizations, where the defender can easily assimilate, and where the defender can easily enter/get a visa
  • FORUM-ASIA members in a country where the defender is temporarily relocated will serve as a host organization ensuring the arrangement for accommodations and regular transfer of funds to cover the defender’s living expenses.
  • For case verification purposes, the case of the defender/s requesting for assistance must be endorsed by a FORUM-ASIA member or partner.

Medical assistance, stress management and psychosocial counseling

FORUM-ASIA also provides medical assistance on a case-by-case basis to HRDs at risk.

Geographic Focus



The website is available in English.